Legislation on financial aid to maintain and improve the ecosystemic benefits provided by forests includes aid for the purpose of developing and restoring riparian zones along permanent waterways flowing through woodland.
Applicants must submit their application to the district authority with competent jurisdiction, which will notify them of the decision of the Nature Conservation Agency (Administration de la nature et des forêts).
Who is concerned
Anyone wishing to receive aid for the restoration of riparian zones along forest waterways must apply in writing to the head of the district concerned.
The land in question must be in a listed green zone. Areas where pesticides are used or where ground work has been done which degrades the soil structure (e.g. tilling and stump removal) are ineligible.
The intended work may include the restoration of riparian zones initially comprising stands of softwood species which are non-indigenous or unsuitable to the location, using indigenous natural forest associations which are suited to the location, or the development of extensively managed wet grassland.
The applicant must submit the application to the head of the relevant district in writing before work commences.
How to proceed
Filing an application
When submitting an application, the applicant must state the following on the form:
- their surname and first name;
- their address;
- their telephone number;
- their banking institution and account number;
- their national identification number;
- the total area of the forest property;
- information about the surface area concerned (commune, section, locality, land registry plot number, cadastral surface and surface treated).
If the applicant owns a farm, they must also state:
- the farm holding number;
- the farm accident insurance number.
The application must be accompanied by the following:
- a topographic map (scale 1:10,000) showing the location of the site;
- a cadastral extract of the plots concerned;
- a copy of the change-of-use permit in case of the development of wet grassland.
The head of the district will inform the applicant of the Nature Conservation Agency's decision, and the measures to be taken to receive a subsidy.
Amount of aid
The aid is made up of the following component parts:
- allocation of a single indemnity for future loss of trees that have not yet reached the end of their economic usefulness, based on a scale measured in euros per hectare;
- a sum of EUR 35 per are for reforestation work carried out in riparian zones hosting natural indigenous forest associations suitable for the geographic location.
The aid is disbursed once the work has been completed, and a formal acceptance report is issued.
For restoration work in riparian zones with indigenous natural forest associations suitable to the location, the beneficiary is required to:
- reserve a strip of land at least 5 metres wide, populated with natural hardwood trees, along the waterway in question:
o by removing all softwood vegetation;
o by reforesting the area through planting or natural regeneration; and
o then by leaving that strip of land to evolve freely without interference;
- remove any softwood vegetation as and when required, and plant hardwood forests composed of indigenous species suited to the local environment (European alder, sycamore, pedunculate oak) in the area adjacent to the riparian strip and at a distance of less than 30 metres from the edge of the waterway;
- carry out forestry activities in such a way as to avoid any traffic in the riparian zone and, as far as possible safeguarding the ground in the remainder of the zone to be restored.
In the case of work to develop extensively managed wet grassland, the beneficiary is required to:
- carry out clearfelling of all softwood stands in the areas of land destined for a change of usage. The forestry work must be carried out in accordance with a code of best practices for protecting soil in the deforested zone, riverbanks, waterways and rare biotopes;
- be in possession of a permit for a change of land use, issued by the Minister. The reallocated land must be redeveloped as extensively managed wet grassland in the conditions provided for in the Grand-Ducal regulation of 11 September 2017 instituting a set of aid programmes to safeguard biodiversity in the rural environment.
Repayment of aid
Any aid paid out must be repaid to the State Treasury when:
- it was obtained through knowingly false or incomplete representations on the part of the applicant;
- the beneficiary has failed to comply with the conditions to which the granting of the aid was subject. In that event, the beneficiary must also pay interest on the amount given, at the legal base rate, calculated as from the day of payment to the day of repayment.
If a false declaration is found to have been made through gross negligence or through failure to adhere to the principles of good forestry practices, the beneficiary is precluded from receiving aid for the year in question.
If they make a deliberate misrepresentation, they are excluded for the following year as well.
Forms / Online services
Demande d’aide en vue du maintien et de l’amélioration des services écosystémiques rendus par la forêt- Restauration des zones rivulaires des cours d'eau en forêt
Förderantrag zur Wiederherstellung der Ufer von Bachläufen in Wäldern